In Season: Molecular Gastro-What?

In pop culture, molecular gastronomy is the merging of scientific tools and techniques with culinary arts – experimenting in the kitchen with tools such as centrifuges, liquid nitrogen, microscopes, or lasers in the preparation of food items. Next time you want to WOW your guests, pretend you’re mad scientists in the kitchen or just looking for a simple way to bring joy to the kids faces, try a few of these recipes that blend science and food together.

Effervescence is a chemical reaction that results in the release of gas and the formation of foam, fizz and bubbles. Popping sugar is sugar that contains carbon dioxide. The sugar melts by coming in contact with moisture (AKA saliva), the carbon dioxide gas is released, resulting in a popping sensation in your mouth.

– Strawberries
– Melting Chocolate (Milk, Dark or White)
– Popping sugar (Pop Rocks)

How to Make It
– Melt chocolate
– Dip strawberries into the chocolate and then dip them into the popping sugar.
– Let the chocolate and popping sugar-covered strawberries cool and then eat them.

At the most basic level, foams are a structure that traps air in bubbles. A gelatin-based foam, like the Rainbow Foam below, is created when partially set gelatin is agitated
(whisked), to incorporate air and bubbles into the gelatin mixture which is then trapped once the gelatin cools. The trapped air results in a light and airy texture. Thanks for the help!

– 4-6 boxes of 3oz Jello, each a different color
– 2 tall glasses
– For each package of Jello:
1 cup boiling water and 1 and 3/4 cups cold water (¼ less than box calls for)

How to Make It
– Mix each flavor of Jello separately and according to instructions on the box, BUT instead use a 1/4 cup less water than is called for on the package.
– Refrigerate each jello mixture for several hours. Don’t let it completely set.
– Pour each jello into a separate bowl and with an electric whisk, whisk each jello until frothy.
– Spoon the first jello color into each glass and refrigerate for 30 minutes or until it sets.
– Repeat this process with the other colors, layering them on top of each other.
– Allow entire Rainbow Foam to sit in fridge overnight to set. Top with whipped cream if you’d like.

Rainbow Foam makes a great treat to celebrate the luck of the IRISH on St. Patty’s day or a beautiful Easter dessert!!